The basketball courts at JRD Tata Sports Complex on Monday, the eve of the men’s camp. Picture by Bhola Prasad
Slam-dunk! A cash-strapped Jharkhand State Basketball Association couldn’t find a sponsor to train its most elite women’s team.
The women’s senior national basketball team from Jharkhand won’t get the benefit of a training camp before they board Jammu Tawi Express for New Delhi on February 24. The men’s team will.
Both will take part in the 64th Senior National Basketball Championship, scheduled at the national capital from February 26 to March 5.
The state basketball outfit does not apparently have funds to train both men’s and women’s team, so it is reserving its resources for the former.
So, while the men’s team will sweat it out at a training camp at JRD Tata Sports Complex from February 11 to 21, the women cagers will sit and twiddle their thumbs.
Singh, a former Olympian, said they were sending the women’s team to the nationals minus a training camp.
Asked why, Singh rued lack of funds. “We can hold the men’s training camp because the outfit’s vice-president Pravin Kumar Singh has promised to take care of costs,” he said.
The state outfit on Monday announced 16 probables for the men’s training camp. Twelve will make it to the team.
“The probables have been asked to report at the venue by noon on Tuesday to head coach J.P. Singh. Accommodation and food will be given to cagers at the residential wing of JRD complex,” said the state outfit’s secretary Harbhajan Singh.
The probables were cherry-picked on the basis of their performance at the January senior state championship in Ranchi.
Camp participants include Shamshad Alam, Amit Das, Dinesh Kumar, Rajak and Devender Milgandi from Jharkhand Police; Saurabh Kumar Singh, Vishal Bagh and Rajesh Mahto from Tata Steel Training Center and Allen Peter and Md Wasim from Jamshedpur Basketball Association.
In addition are Vikas and G. Raj from Seraikela-Kharsawan and Shashi Shekhar from Bokaro Sports Association; Manish Kumar from Dhanbad; Abhishek Jojo and Sukhdeep Singh from Chotanagpur Basketball Association and Prem Kumar and Biju Joseph from Ranchi.